tv State Innovation Exchange Legislator Conference Welcome Remarks and Panel... CSPAN October 11, 2017 8:22am-10:16am EDT
when she is ten years old and she looks back and she is like mommy, what did you do when donald trump was doing all of these awful things? she is going to learn about this president and what happened. i want to tell her i fought fearle fearlessly for her and any time i had a platform i used it. i think about my child a lot.
i think about everything this attacks on every freaking second they do that. we have someone that sits in the oval office to attack everything that i am. so it is important to me to continue to fight and i'm part of an organization that gives me the opportunity to do that. we stopped the aca which is incredibly important to have done. [ applause ] you guys are part of the
it is on what is happening with a number of bills. i would like you all to speeng to what effective national and state partnerships look like. what does it look like from you all's perspective and from my state legislator's perspective? what are some things father or mother -- folks should know? it could get a little --
>> i know there are enough of you in the audience that will hold me accountable if i misspeak on this. you know, we will be 50 years old in 2019. we have members on the ground in every state. i want to back up far second. i hear all of the time, did you do state work or federal work? the answer is we do both. i think a third category that gets passed over too frequently and that's national work which
is that the sum of the states should add up to more than their parts, right? y'all are doing incredibly important work that promotes the values of progressives so we ask does it actually matter to women and family ns those states. does it lift up new leaders? and the third is does it change national conversation? does it actually put the opposition on record and does it allow us to frame things rather
than reacting to the opposition's values? my friend here on my right, we have been working on a bill. it is not well known in choosing contraception and abortion but a young woman was fired for being out of wedlock. i didn't know we used this term anymore until this happened. we have been working with california on this. we worked with our good friends at the municipal level. one of the red is red states. we passed a municipal ordnance with the help of our amazing
local folks and the governor of missouri got so so so bent out of shape that he called the state legislature back into session. i am watching stacey newman nod her head. do you have a special pro-life session to overturn st. louis ard nanc ordnance. the national headlines were like the missouri governor wants you to be able to be fired for your birth control. we had already done this in d.c. between d.c., st. louis and the missouri state ledge islator who were prepared, our great friends we are having a national conversation which has never been about abortion.
we have a blue state that is leading the way and talking about our values and we're changing the national conversation at a time where the federal government seems held bent. >> so when you talk about going beyond the resistance it's not federal versus state. it's a national conversation. >> you all are in the states. you're on the front lines of the resistance. >> so we are one of just a little bit about a background. i'll answer the question.
so we are one of the largest independent organizations. we have about 8 million members all across the country. we don't have staff offices based in different regions or states. we try to empower our members and really make sure they have the information they need when it came to repealing aca. we made sure they went to the town halls. it is really kind of empowering our members and also we help our allies. it's one of the ways this resistance is working. making sure we tap into our
members to push what we are trying to do. with one thing that we did this summer is we had something called resistance summer where we had more than a thousand members across the country. we had neighborhood about what are the important issues chls we wanted to start this now and really training people in the states and giving them the tools and mobilizing and having the conversation what are the issues people care about most in their neighborhood. we call them move on mobilizers. it is a way to get folks embedded into their communities as we go into 2018. so that's what it looks like to us. working and having that ally relationship and helping, you know, the different issues that different folks are working on, tapping into our millions of membership and raising money
too. we sent an e-mail and mobilized that community. those are the ways we tried to really tap into what we do and what folks we have and power that we have. >> you know, the resistance is about y'all going to work. >> yes. >> so how have you been able to leverage some of these national partnerships? what does it look like and if you could give two best practices what could they be? >> i think we all know kcoalit n coalitio coalitions. we can't do half of the work we do without strong coalition
without us. a lot of what we do in new york is driven and done in partnership with amazing organizations. a coalition of reproductive health organizations said we should do a bill family planning services into the state budget if we can't get it done at the state level. what i think as a state legislator is really nice post november. we are no longer thought of as the minor leagues. we are now to major leagues. i think as soon as we start recognizing that other organizations will be there to fight shoulder to shoulder with us.
>> so a few items, when it come to the resistance, when building coalitions or we are working one on one we need to be able to prove to residents we work with every day that standing strong against trump means making america stronger and we have to be able to prove that. i think one of the biggest areas i'm concerned -- and i will be very far moment. we do not have a focus on rural america. if we do not become america's party we will continue to lose.
86 assemblies, house of delegates have gone to republicans. over a thousand legislative seats have been lost. we are not focusing on those voters. i think if you take a look at the electoral map after this november it's so red because it was a blood bath. here is what i believe. rather than democrats continuing to give lip service to rural americans we need to be able to step up, show up and be able to deliver. i say that because i'm the only rural democrat in the california state senate. if you take a look at rural america the poorest counties in the state of california are rural.
two of the five counties in the state are in my district. highest numbers of homelessness, highest childhood poverty, highest opioid addiction and they want good schools. they want jobs. they want quality health care and they want to be able to log on and get onto the internet. i have a county that 40% of households aren't even connected to the internet. i'm going on the soap box here far second. zbli like >> i like a soap box. >> we need to coordinate. the only way to end homelessness in this country is providing individuals with mental health services as well as drug and hol
addiction counseling. it was modelled after utah. when it comes to taxes and holding our president accountable we were 25 different states across america. career training, 72% of american public high school graduates will not go onto a four year college degree. democrats will be running in our classrooms, am i right? when it comes to dreamers republicans and democrats alike agree they need to stay in this country because it's the country that they love and it's the country that they are fighting for every day. so if democrats and all of us progressives don't get our stuff together we'll continue to lose. we will win the house. we will win the senate and we'll take back our state houses once we start focusing on rural america. [ applause ]
>> i see all of the rural america people in the crowd. some people would argue is that it leaves some people out. that's not necessarily my view. i'm talking about some people. some people would say the problem is that it leaves some people out such as rural america as the state senator just noted. others would argue that when we talk -- and i would like the panel to explore this. yes, we have to do more for rural america. some are dealing with some of the same stuff as people in downtown st. louis. we are not talking about people that look like me. we are only talking about people that look like you. so how do we bridge the gap in the conversation? the resistance we just established is about doing the work. how can we bridge the gap in the conversation so that we are
actively putting forth an agener agenda -- white people only care about the economy. let's talk about that. >> i'm happy to jump in. >> you go and then i would like to hear from the assemblywoman and then i want to hear because i know you have feelings. >> i think that a successful strategy is not a strategy won. i think some times we get wrapped up into it is just rural america. when you look it was 10 some times 15% less when president obama ran. there is a problem with that. i continue to come back to this.
the majority of americans who want to keep their health insurance. there's a county, 26,000 people, one of the most rural in the state of california, over 8,000 are on the affordable care act. nearly a third of the entire county population. they voted for president trump. we have to be able to go into that county, communicate with them, take a county in alabama and be able to show what democrats are doing to be able to keep their health care. show what they doing to provide quality education. show to build middle class jobs. i think whether it is in a community of color or in a community you have up and down north county, we have to have a strategy to be able to take our state houses back. i also believe those bridges aren't as long as we think.
>> okay. >> pandora's box. >> open. >> i guess rural america, do you define that as white people? this is a conversation democrats have all of the time. there are people of color that live in rural america. i want to be clear who we are talking about. there is a different conversation for ledge -- okay. let me step back. if you look at 2016 we had a lot of issues. it wasn't just rural america, right? it was african americans, black folks, they were not reached out
to. there were some things we didn't address well enough. there are millennials. millennials went and voted for the third party. it's hafrd to look at this and say it was one thing. there were multiple things that happened that we need to address. and let's not forget one of the big problems we will have in 2018 and 2020 is russia. it's not being addressed. it's not. there are a lot of things that happened we need to have a serious conversation about. it is like how do we treat people of color? how do we go out and reach out to millennials. there were things we did that did not reasonate.
that's kind of what i feel when i hear about the primary focus on conversation about rural america because it was across the board. >> so i don't think you represent rural america, but in going forward -- we can have a lot of conversations about what happened and what folks did wrong but going forward, what is this everybody agenda? what does that even look like particularly for the states? i think the states will have to lead on this issue. clearly the democratic party is having some issue. >> and the other big piece to all of this is a local recruitment and running of candidat
candidates. the critical piece that's missing here that we haven't addressed as a national party and we are not doing effectively at the state level yet is recruiting and running of candidates who will speak to vote ergs. you always heard the story of i hate congress but i love my congressperson. i hate the state legislature but i love my local assemblywoman. that's where we'll start to see change and see more people getting engaged. if we are picking people who look like they are voters there is power in that and strength in that diversity.
ultimately we are really really going to make a difference. >> i'm going to come back to that point. i like it but there's something we also need to impact there. >> i think there are a lot of different conversations going on here. i think there's a conversation to have about how resources get distributed through the democratic party. it needs to be transparent, loud and robust. it is really really difficult and it is the way that we actually end up from a nuts and bolts perspective reaching people regardless of population density. i think that's a real thing. from a policy perspective i think i will be controversial. i don't think we are losing
because of policy. i don't think we are losing because of some fathers and mothers divide between economic populism. i believe that people are not -- i believe we are experiencing a huge in government generally. you read polls. it came out last week and it said 78% of people disapprove. the next line is 68% disapprove. that leads to under performance. i don't think this is a policy problem. i think it is an ability to speak about collected valued in a language that's tailored to different cultures. that comes from localities. i think we are right on with our values. i think most people believe in
progressive and democratic values. i don't think we knead to see one to reach sur ban voters. i this we need to motivate people because we believe they are actually going to do something and we'll do something in their interest. it always has to be couched where people are coming from as well as a confidence that i'm going to pray for you. i get it. the policies are there. i will take my issues are considered really controversial and some times particularly with rural voters. the ones who suffer the most are rural voters. vice president mike pence, i don't know if anyone here is -- but i don't need to tell you guys, vice president mike pence, in his scorched approach closed
down reproductive health clinics across the state. that doesn't actually end abortion. what we know is that when abortion is made the number of abortions don't go down. two women have been sent to prison. what did happen? maternal health out dpcomes wen down. this is about values. this is about who cares for who and in 2018 drop off women vote voters, we need to get to the polls in 2018 across this country. their top two issues are health care and af abortibortion right. that was not our language. the reason for that is
particularly women who don't have access to reproductive health care acutely know that this is an attack on their families. is it an attack on their future? for me we have to be able to have a collective set of values that we are communicating. y'all know how to communicate best. that language may differ. it is not giving up values. we don't have a policy problem. >> so that's interesting. if we don't have a -- i think it's interesting because we don't have a policy problem when it is literally y'all's job to create policy.
they got one. and so they said they didn't like that. they didn't like the racism. they wanted this particular thing and that's why they pulled the lever for donald trump. if you ask democratic voters -- and we can talk about state legislative races, democratic voters don't necessarily feel that way. so how do we connect with folks on the values? do we have to train the people? i feel that's only way the resistance actually becomes effective at home. yes, we won on the health care fight thus far. we beat that back.
in over 33 states more than 90 pieces of legislature has been introduced to restrict access. are we really winning? that's the question for the panel. we have to be getting the resources. we never ever ever placed organizers in a place we haven't have an impact. y'all will help us determine where it is. we are never in a place that we think we can make a difference that we are not making a similar difference in a state house or state senate race. to us that is the ball game. that is the way back. so i do think that there's a huge conversation about how we
think about resource allocation. there is no doubt that the other side is way more sophisticated in terms of voter suppression. it is absolutely true in the way they are moved through the state houses. it is awful. it is awful there. it is more than that. you know, all of the work they did, that they are talking about in the trump administration, all of the work of the russians and elections, it's like a real issue. a lot of that was actually psychologically knowing how to depress people. it wasn't even how do i get my voters out. it's like how do i get you from going? how do i divide you from the folks that are telling you they actually want to fight from you? how do i diminish the confidence. they both mentioned white women
have it. >> they have been keeping the republican party. >> and i actually -- i'm sorry, i think it lets white men off when you say it that way. you know, it is traditionally our base. we have reached into rural and lot of it is psychological. i feel like some times we are working at 2.0 and they are working at 5.0. again, it's not a policy thing, it's also a psychology thing. it is understanding what makes people vote. i won't tell you we have the answer. i'll tell you we have ideas that we feel like we can test in 2018.
we all have to be testing new things, learning from those tests, shares with each other so they can be replicated and keeping our eye. >> you want to jump in? >> yeah. there's not an easy answer here. i think it's probably part of the problem. so i was there the first two years. what i saw is that republicans were so angry that there was a black man in the white house, so angry there was a black man in the oval office that they strike that ja-- they said they were g to resist from day one.
i'm sure a lot of you saw this, they raised $60 million over the ten years and made sure they flipped legislative and flipped governor seats and worked and pounded on that. it's not a sexy thing to talk about. all of these bad bills popped up. all of these things started creeping up because republicans strike that ja invested and raised tens of millions of dollars because they felt like they were losing their identity. and so now we are in a place where are we winning? that's a really good question and it's a complicated answer. if you look across the country, yes, it's very red.
one thing donald trump has done is he unified us. we do have a lot of values. we know who we are. so we are in a tough spot as democrats and progressives. 2018 is going to be a huge test case. it doesn't stop there. let's not forget about november. we have two important races in november. we have got to win those. all of the other special elections that are coming up from now until then. so it is a hard conversation and there is no one answer but we have to win. we have to win in the states and we have to win in 2020.
conversation and lead to charge? >> i want to answer that but also taking a step back to your last question, i think that at the end of the day we do still have a lot of work to do on the policy front. i'm from new york and very lucky i have my own dedicated staff to work on legislative ideas. not many others can do that, right? i hear about it all of the time. you're sharing in l.a., sharing staff that is a struggle. that is also why six is so important. you now a resource and people who will connect you to other legislators across the country who are working and give similar ideas. i have a bill that i introduced
that would diverse state contracts that would contract to build the border wall with mexico. it has been replicated because someone took an interest in it, spread the knowledge, spread the actual bill draft and got other legislators interested. that is the only way we are going to lift up the entire party is if we are working together on common policy ideas and helping each other out. >> i agree. when we take a look at the issues that many of us, if not all of us, are in this room,
jobs, infrastructure, it is what republicans agree with too. i think we have some challenges. i will give you an example in california. it will be a majority minority state. we have state assembly districts that we simply can't win. we have eight or nine point advantages in voter registration. the reason being is we are not turning out latino voters. where i feel frustrated at times is where we have one held l of voter registration we remember people aren't going to turn out. they want to know what we are doing for them, am i right? and so where i feel frustrated and we have to keep going back. we have to make it a mission not just for months but for years.
we are to embed ourselves and yes, it will take dollars. imagine if we started this five years ago where we would be at as a party and progretssive movement. if we are seeing dangerous actions taken by this president this party, state legislatures have to step up and take this president to court and fight him. because majority of the time this president will lose in court whether it is his personal side or professional the law is on our side we have to get serious about this resistance. political strategy and money, republicans are great with strategy and then focusing that strategy with significant money. we have to be more organized. i think that's going to mean those states that with can help organize maybe in new york or california can start organizing
in southwest states or in middle america to be able to help targeting certain races. i think that's the other area we need to be able to go. >> y'all can clap for that. go ahead. >> okay. we are going to take some crowd questions. where are the microphones? we got one on each side. okay i have a question right here in the blue sweater. you know what? hold on a second. we will do our oprah thing. take it to the crowd. >> i am the first latina in the
history of oregon. thank you. so my question is what are each of you doing to lead the resistance to folks who don't speak english? our country is diversifying more? what are we doing to make sure everybody feels included? it is impartive we start thinking about everybody america by 2032, the working class will be majority, minority and by 2040 america will be majority people of color. so what are you all doing to lead the resistance to folks that don't speak english? >> thank you for all of your work. it is good to see you.
number two, we just passed the toughest law in the land to be able to protect those who are part of our immigrant community. it no longer allows for cooperation of local law enforcement with ice. it has been controversial but we have 11 to 12 million who call this country home. you have about 300 to 400,000. those who have a felony probably should not be in this country. for president trump to be able to say there are 2 million with a felony going against what --
department of homeland security statistics are, that's fake news. if we are not standing strong right now then who are we as americans? that is why california just passed and we also are providing over 100,000 kids who are undocumented health insurance via covered california. >> he is a millennial. shout out to the millennials. >> thank you to the panel today. i have a question about removing barriers within our own party. often we say we want young people involved. when you look at the laws running for office in many statements they are different.
instead of people in direct primaries? >> excellent question. who would like to hop on that? so the question is -- let me sum it up for y'all. what are we -- how can we open up the party really for young people there? you have to be 30 to run for anything so what can we do to open up and also i think we need to have courage use operations as democrats about we say we want young people at the table
but a lot of times it means you don't want me to say anything. let's talk about that. >> i totally agree. >> i mean i'm with you 100%. when rain people looked at me like i had three heads. why would you want to go work in the state capital? i got you look so young or you look like a teenager. i feel like a lot of work that i do every day is leading this network of other women of color, other young women who want to run for office, who don't know
where to go, who don't have the resources. recently we have seen a lot of organizations who will start to turn the tide on some of that work but oftentimes, yeah, it can feel like you're the only one out there doing that work. >> does the democratic party need a pipeline program? >> absolutely. and what you're seeing are a lot of young people who want to get involved. they are saying it's my turn or i want to step in. we do have a problem as a party. we do not train our young people. there are people who stay in office who have not left. they are not looking behind them. there are some people who are. they are not looking to say who is behind me that i can elevate so they can step in when i'm no longer around. i think the democratic party, we
need to tell people there's an opportunity here. we need your voice. it's recruiting and creating a pipeline so you need both so young people know that hey, they can do this as well. >> i don't disagree with that but i think it's really important of a new organization it focuses on college azed women who want to be prepared for office. it is a fabulous organization.
rather than assume the democratic party is going do it perfectly. i think it is a really really important pathway forward. part of this is actually rebuilding confidence. we recognize the valuable work rather than are part of the democrat ek par democratic party or not. we have to end the distrust. activist activists, we have to end the outside groups. both things are real and part of how we do that is when we recognize each other's work and has pipeline work is critically important.
when i travel around i got back and talked to a lot of students. the last thing they want to do right now, if i start with you should join the democratic party they will not listen to another word that i say. it doesn't mean can't view them recognizing democratic party as a party of their interests. kroers to recognizing the value they bring to the table. >> did you want to see something? >> i was just about to say what you said. i will share with you, i first was elected to my local school pord at 19. and it was a hell of a a fight. we need to learn from that lesson. people who look like them and able to lead the effort. when they lead the effort, those are our new leaders that will be able to organize and change communities for the positive
forever. i just want to it say i a apologize for leaving early because of the fires. we'll take the next question from the crowd as the senator is leaving. who has the next question. >> good morning, everyone. just last week, the border community, i have the distinction of being the only in the latina legislative caucus. and last sunday i wrote the recommendation letter for a la tee na who i hope will succeed me. we have had $2 million in fines that the legislature owns because of planned parenthood court cases. and i agree. we have the values. we have the message. but where we failed, i believe, in arizona we picked up one house seat and one senate seat.
so we're kind of a counterstate. but i don't think we adequately connected our values and our issues with the frustration and anxiety and anger that many of the people in the country are facing. >> so how can we better connect? this is what we were talking about earlier. how can we connect the things we say we're about with the policies that we're fighting for to what people are dealing with at home. in a way that helps us win. and be effective. what i heard you saying, which i think is totally true in my experience of traveling around the country is is that people are angry, sad and frustrated. and that if we don't start by acknowledging that anger, fear and frustration, we're never
going to start from a place of people thinking we recognize what they are going through. and this is actually collective, it's gripped our kocountry. the fear that our children are going to have worse lives than we do is very real. it actually crosses ethnicity and crosses party lines right now. and so i think we have a tendency which i really value of framing things in the positive and wanting to look to the future. if we don't connect with people and validate their fear and validate their frustration and anger, then they are not going to see us as an ally in moving forward. some of that gets into challenges that we probably don't have time to discuss.
but a lot of that fear and anger and frustration particularly among trump voters was coming from a sense of social dislocation that has to do with the changing demographics in america. that is is a really very, very difficult and real challenge. all of the social data since the election has showed that. and i'm not going to sit out here and say i have the answer. this is the collective challenge for us moving forward without doing the simple and stupid answer is is which is saying we need to win back white working class voters because that's not the future of this country. but how do we be inclusive and recognize the fear of social dislocation and offer solutions that make folks feel like they are not being left behind when that comes from the deep place within and on the other side we have people that have been left behind for so long and are tired of being left behind. this is hopefully what we're all
going to be talking about over the next couple days because that's the real challenge. sglif another e question right here. >> my question for you all is the resistance looks a lot different in the south. so we often have to tow the line between being effective in our state house while speaking out for our constituents. so for the national organizations, what are you all doing to help lift up the south? we are in super minorities. we are struggling. and i think a lot of times the progressive strategy or the democratic strategy does not include southern states. so for these national organizations, what are your plans to engage us? we're down here fight. we need your help. >> that's a fantastic question.
i think for us, we try to be very mindful that we are a national organization. that we do not -- we try to be sensitive to areas like the south. so if there's something going on, we don't come in and hover in and kind of try to fix things. we do strategic partnerships with organizations on the ground. so if there is -- we'd love to partner with you and let us know how to be helpful. that's how we kind of deal with things without looking like we're just coming from up here when you have to actually be be on the ground to understand what's happening. so that is the most important way that we deal with things. if there is, i'd love to exchange information after this. if there are ways we can be helpful and use our membership and try to figure out how we can just help you in any way, that's how we do it. we do strategic partnership. we do in and let you guys do the
work, but we give resources as much as we can and be helpful as much. maybe the move may not work where you are. people may be like, nope, that's not who we are. so that's how we try to really be helpful. on the question before, i think i agree people are suffering and that is so real right now in 2017. especially with vulnerable communities. what we need to do, i believe, in that connection is we have to own the conversation. we have to take it over. and the other side of the aisle, they do such a great job by taking a lie. something that is so not true and banging it in over and over and over again. they are in such unison that it's almost like the lie becomes true. and we as democrats, as
progressives, we have to make sure that we are just owning the conversation and really knowing how to communicate, because that is one of the biggest problems that i know that i saw when i go back in my head and look at the last eight years, the last ten years, that was always it. even if you look at aca, obamacare, those first four years, the first six years republicans owned the conversation. it was easy for them. they were able to pick two or three things controlled it and spread lies across the country. i'm not saying aca is perfect. that's not what i'm ta saying. what they said about it, was it true. they sold it as truth. we just were never able to counter at that. i'm just using aca as an example. but we really have to figure out how do we communicate not from d.c., but from what's happening in the states. how do people understand what it
is that the policies that we're putting forth, how it will help them. in a real way. because people are suffering. we have just looking at daca, i keep thinking about the young people. we're in five months now. they may have to leave this country. probably will. and that's going to hurt millions of people. not just the 800,000. so how do we take that message and really just kind of knock it in. >> i have two answers. well, three answers. the first is good old fashioned redistribution. we make disproportionate amounts of money and try to divert some to the southern states. and in some cases that's building infrastructure and some cases it's actually working with partners already on the ground and through those partners.
we did have a project where we worked with the mayors of the five largest cities to see what was possible to start the conversation about women and families, which gives you in the state legislature a hold on being able to actually do our values work even when you have a hostile state government. my husband's family, yes, exactly. and then the third is listen. which she was saying. and maybe that's the first. but staying open and coming to places like this so y'all can tell us what you need more of it. and that we can be. responsive to that and that's the way we approach it. >> is there a mike out there? i'm chris taylor for the state of wisconsin. and my question is, when are we going to start having the discussion about building a
progressive infrastructure and machine just like the right has. i go to the exchange council meetings and they have been building this machine for 45 years. we don't have a way to communicate a message. n a lot of parts of rural wisconsin. we have no media infrastructure. they have invested in americans for prosperity. so we didn't even the network or the structure to communicate the policies that were work iing on. to get a message into some of our communities. so when are we going to start focusing on building that network like the right does have. >> i'd also like to add where are we going to get that money like the right has. it's true. the reason the right has been able to have such an effective messaging strategy and apparatus
is because they have a few small wealthy families that bankroll the idea. so if we do not have that on the left or people willing to step up to do that, how can we mirror that effort or at least compete. >> that's a great question. when it came to taking back some of the state houses, a lot of these state houses, republicans raise tens of millions of dollars to do that. they did it effectively. we thought about that. we thought about what can we do now to really start and build something with members that we have across the kocountry and
train them and give them the resources to have those conversations and to talk to people about these different issues. that's what we did this summer with move in mobilizers. it starts a process. we wanted to see how successful can we be. where can we take this. and that's why we tried this experiment and did really well. we're going to continue to build. so that we're building in these states. we're training our folks. we're giving them resources. we're having the real conversation. what do they want to see. so that is one way to dpo about it. but it is a larger question that we have to continue to try to figure out and answer.
>> no way do i want to challenge the resources in getting these messages out to all corners of all states in this country. we're not going to compete on money. and we have phenomenal examples of where the person with the most money does not win. actually loses. where we are going to compete and this also takes money, but it is in the same model or same amount of money. nay they need money because they don't have people. they need money because they don't have people. we've got people, and when we spend our resources on actually make iing sure all of those peo can participate, want to participate and have the capacity to participate, that's when we win. i don't want to diminish the need for more resources to make that happen, but i used to work in campaign finance reform. it's not that it's not important
because it's extremely important to be able to compete, but i'm going to take the people over the money any day and put my bets there. >> i think we have a question over there. >> yes, ma'am, thank you so much. i'd like for you all, if you would, talk a little bit more about fear. because that's what the republican party is doing. they are promoting fear. they have been doing it and i heard this over the last seven or eight years or even longer. people will buy whatever you're selling. in america, i live in a rural area and i hear this every day. people say you know i just couldn't vote for hillary, so i voted for trump. now if you think about it for a
moment, how do you choose one crook over another crook. and then when you look at with no offense to anyone in this room, no offense at all. but when you look at washington, it's made up of a lot of old white men. and they are thinking for everybody in america because they are promoting fear every day. they tell someone else another lie. fake news. fake news. they move from one point to another to keep people wondering what's going to happen. so i wish you all would discuss some strategies to how we overcome that. >> well, panel, what you got? how do we overcome it? >> the level of bigotry that's out there is astounding.
i know that i face it not just going through twitter, but through hate mail sent to offices, through the rhetoric we're seeing from people who have been just influenced by fear. and to go back to i think alisa's point, you need to ultimately give them something else to believe in, to focus on and to organize around. we haven't done that effectively over the course of many years. i think today is step one in that process, but that worked back the racism and bigotry and all the awful rhetoric we're seeing will take some time. >> i'm going to go for it. so donald trump has tapped into the worst parts of this country.
and it's that fear, it's that all of the horriblisms that we hear about. and that we have to face every day. but the thing that i like to at least give myself some hope is that that's only 35%. while it is significant, it's 35% of the supporters who will probably never, ever leave him, who truly believe everything that he says. so that means there's a big chunk of this country i like to hope and think that do not believe in this guy. and are hopefully don't believe in those z awfulisms. so i'd like to think while the country is divided, there's still more of us than there is of him and his people. so what we need to do is we need to continue to just have to keep communicating and have to have a message that hits home.
>> i mean, i think it is starting with the local and working our way up. you gave the example of hillary and donald trump. we could talk forever about the 2016 election at the presidential level. but if we take a page out of the other side, we know that actually as confidence has collapsed in the federal government and fear has become an effective tool for the republicans, the best place to start to man those relationships is at the local and state level where y'all are actually there every day talking to the people whose lives you're affecting. i think that matters very much. it sort of goes back to one of the first questions that wonderful woman from oregon, which is breaking down the artificial barriers among our constituents. one of the first things i thought was really important to do in 2013 was making sure that the organization adopted a
position on immigration. comprehensive immigration reform and a pathway to citizenship. because being able to stay together as families is very much a reproductive justice issue. voter suppression is very much a dignity and empowerment issue and matters for women and families and having the policies that matter. so at the community level, if we break down these barriers, if we were able to say that we can bring members and move on members and y'all together in the same room along with our friends in new mexico and colorado and young women united and start to actually knit that community together and invest that faith in y'all as local and state legislators, i really do think we're going to see the national impact of that. >> i'd also like to add we need to call out race schiism and bi
every time we see it. >> we have a question over here. don't be shy about it either. >> i was elected to the georgia house at age 24. >> she's also a millennial. >> many young people want to know what each state democratic party's strategy is on impeachment because this is a timely way to get young people involved in the political pipeline and sooner. so how do you think states can support our congress people on impeaching donald trump. >> the me lillennials did not c to play this morning. i think another question to pose are our congress people even in the mind set of impeachment?
>> to set it up, there are young people across this country. they are also like what can we do. we need to get donald trump out of office. why are our congress folks not talking about impeachment. what are they doing about impeachment, but there's another conversation to be had about the fact that some people do not want to use the i word. so we can't talk about one could argue about a strategy for impeachment if the folk who is are in charge of impeachment aren't even getting there. the other part is there will be. no impeachment. so answer some of these questions. >> i think this is why 2018 is so important. if republicans certainly are not
going to be impeaching donald trump any time soon. they have the power to do that on both sides. they are in lock step with donald trump and his awful bigotry and everything else. that's not going to happen. on the democratic side, if you ask our wonderful congresswoman, she's talking about every moment, every second that she can. i applaud her for it. i think she's 110% right. move on has called for it. our members are in lock step with it. millions of members. and i cannot really answer as to why there are leaders in our democratic party who they run away from. i'm not really sure why that is. there couldn't be any list of clearer things as to why he should be impeached.
>> anybody else want to touch this? >> this has amazing. give this panel a round of applause. we want to say thank you to the panel. this has been absolutely amazing. you have a little bit of wiggle room before your next session. if you like what you heard, please tweet about us. #six jr #sixconference. i appreciate you spending your time with us today. we'll see you next time.
c-span where history unfolds daily. in 1979 c-span was created a as a public service by america's cable television companies. it's brought to you by your satellite or cable provider. >> we're live this morning at the office building on capitol hill for a hearing on the opioid epidemic in america. today's hearing will be a little different from most because we'll only be hearing from members of congress as they testify before the committee. they will be offering their personal stories about the epidemic. also talking about the experiences their constituents and they will awful potential legislative approaches to reducing opioid addiction. members will be testifying this morning before the house energy and commerce subcommittee on health. the committee chair is texas congressman michael ber jis. should get unde